Cannae: Hannibal's Greatest Victory by Adrian Goldsworthy
On 2 August 216BC, Hannibal won his greatest victory in the plain north of the small, hilltop town of Cannae in southern Italy. By the end of the day his outnumbered mercenaries had enveloped and massacred the greater part of the largest army Rome had ever fielded, turning this into one of the bloodiest battles ever fought, rivalling even the industrialised slaughter of the twentieth century AD. For the Romans Cannae became the yardstick by which other defeats were measured, never surpassed and only once or twice equalled in the next six centuries. Cannae remains one of the most famous battles ever fought, frequently alluded to in modern military writing, and Hannibal's tactics are still taught in the military academies where today's officers are trained. This volume is a brand new look at the battle, and explains clearly and concisely exactly how it was that Hannibal achieved his historic victory.